Tech, No Babel

In Web Articlesby tfwm

Live-Streaming: Encoding Without a Computer

by Paul Alan Clifford

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Most churches think that you can encode your video for live-streaming using an older computer and free software. In this video, learn why that won’t work and a hardware alternative that might be a better value.

The problem with the old computer/free software idea is that live-encoding is a beefy process, meaning it either takes efficient software (which isn’t free) or a fast processor (which you don’t find in an old computer).

So, you can start with a $500-600 computer and add $500 software or you can start with $1000 computer and use free software. Either way, you’ll also need a capture card, raising the price further.

A better choice is to get an encoding device. Last week, I did a review of the Boxcaster by Boxcast. At $500, it’s a great option in you know you’ll stick with their service.

If you think you might switch back and forth, consider the Vidiu by Teredek or the Vidiu mini which sell for $700 and $500 respectively and work on nearly any live-streaming host.

There are more expensive options as well which provide more features, but if you’re just getting started, I’d look at these options first.

They provide a key advantage over the software based live-streaming encoders: no one will update the OS or download software that causes conflicts onto them.

For more about these hardware boxes, watch the video above.


PaulAlanCliffordPaul Alan Clifford works with church staff and volunteers who want to use technology to impact people far from God, by navigating through the maze of possibilities and jargon. He wants your church to get past the hurdles and embrace the tools so that technology is a gift, not a burden. He has been a tech volunteer with Quest Community Church in Lexington, KY since 2000 and is the founder of, llc.

Heliterally wrote the book on podcasting in churches, twitter in churches, & servant-hearted volunteering, as well as writing various articles for publications like “Church Production” and “Technologies for Worship” magazines.

Join him every week MondayFriday for these free, live shows on MondayFriday at 11a edt, 8a pdt, 3p utc: